fw800 drive formats

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by smetvid, Jul 8, 2010.

  1. smetvid macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2009
    I have recently switched to FCP from a PC Avid editing world. To start the switch small I went with a base model Imac to test the waters first. I am used to using some pretty large raids but of course on the Imac my storage options are very slim.

    The best option of course is FW800.

    What I have noticed however is that these days it is pretty common for a single SATA drive to run at 120MB/S + when empty and only drop to about 80 MB/S when close to full. Given that FW800 usually caps out around 80MB/S is there really any logical reason to use a 2 drive raid-0 unit? I know with ESATA I would see a clear advantage but with FW800 the single drive seems like it would work just as well given the 80MB/S cap.

    Thanks for any input.
  2. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    You are conflating unrelated things. FW800, SATA, and eSATA are communication technologies. FW800 is a general technology that is able to communicate everything from storage drives, digital cameras, printers, scanners, etc. SATA and eSATA are used almost exclusively to communicate with storage drives. The communication speed of each technology has an upper limit. Beneath each cap, the communication speed for a specific device is determined by the specific device.
  3. smetvid thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2009
    I'm sorry if my question wasn't really clear enough. I have been a professional editor for over 12 years so my understanding of the concepts are pretty sound. I'm used to using and managing 8TB areas at work with our Avid and Scratch based systems. To be honest this is my first time ever having to use FW800 as a connection method for any type of edit system. We use FW800 with the Red drives from our Red camera but that was it.

    All I want to know is if the connection speed of FW800 is really worth using a raid-0. I'm just talking pure bandwidth here. Thank you ahead of time for answering the question.
  4. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020


    Apr 16, 2008
    Phoenix, AZ
    FW800 has a theoretical bandwidth limitation of 100MB/sec, so yes, using an external RAID-0 over FW800 would yield somewhat noticeable performance increases (although not quite as significant as an eSATA connection).

    I've seen slight performance benefits myself on CalDigit and G-Tech RAID-0 drives. Still, I prefer using eSATA when possible.

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